2188 Tasting Notes
I have the tin of this tea (#21) at home to provide some variety in what I am drinking there. Although, now my Harney Rose Scented is also at home (for cold brewing), so I don’t actually have any plain rose teas at work. I brought some of this in to have today, though.
Anyway, I’m not entirely sure why I bought a tin of this tea even though I had a bunch of rose tea already. Guess one can never have too many rose blacks. This one is delicious, nice and rosey with a good base. As I might have expected. I would have to try this one back to back with Rose Scented to see if I prefer one of them.
I drank this one (#22) yesterday with the same method that I used on the Early Spring: lazy man’s gongfu, dumping each of my short gaiwan steeps into a big cup to drink. I will say I let this one steep a bit longer each time than the last one, mostly because I was concerned I wasn’t getting enough out of the leaves. Whether that is to blame for my tasting is unknown (we are talking 10 second instead of 5 second steeps, still increasing by 5 seconds each time, though).
Basically, I found this one to be kind of lackluster, especially in comparison to the Early Spring from the same year. It was less floral, less sweet, less buttery, less spectacular. Way more vegetal. It was a reasonably tasty, fine, servicable cup of tea, but I expect mind blowing from these oolongs. I thought I had some 2013 spring picking, but apparently I only had the early spring picking? I don’t quite know what’s up. Only the 2011 picking is in my ratings. I did have a few different Autumn pickings from previous years, so maybe that’s what I am thinking of. (What do you know, I found my receipt from spring of 2013 and it only has the early spring and the previous year’s autumn pickings)
Anyway, provisional ratings but I will definitely have to try this one again. Equusfell if you are reading this you definitely have to try the early spring (you can come get a sample from me if you want); I hadn’t tried this one and didn’t realize that this picking may not be as great as it should be.
Last year’s early spring picking, completely unopened (#23). I think I had been waiting until I finally finished my 2013 pickings, which I did recently. I’m only a year behind on my pickings; guess I shouldn’t order any of the spring picking this year, and maybe next year I will actually be ready to order fresh oolong and drink it.
Today I did a lazy man’s gongfu. I didn’t feel like the whole rigamarole so I did a bunch of gaiwan steeps but dumped them all into a big 16oz mug to drink together. It was amazing, as I would expect. Sweet, floral, like oolong candy. Mmmmm. Honestly I didn’t spend too much time thinking about this one while I drank it (too busy knitting and re-reading Game of Thrones), but it was very similar to the amazing 2013 early spring picking.
Apparently I had ordered an ounce of this tea (#24) but never broke into it? Well I did, since it was open, but I don’t have any other notes other than my first review of the sample I got.
Anyway, it’s pretty good. My appreciation for roasted oolong is waning, but this is almost Laoshan Black and it doesn’t really taste like most roasted oolongs. I still prefer LB, but this is fun to have every once in a while.
This tea (#25) is exceptional. It doesn’t even have any hard-to-get ingredients or super-limited teas. But alas, I guess it wasn’t popular enough (or beloved enough by someone on staff) to keep its place in the permanent collection. At least I got some more when they reblended it last year.
Golden Earl Reblend is up next (#26)! Super delicious. It kind of irritates me that this blend (and Gardens of Anxi, which is after this one) is archived, thus never coming back, and instead we just get tons of blends with too many ingredients (e.g., the Intelligent Nutrients blends, and tons of herbals). I see they do have an Earl Grey in their blends now, which is new I guess, but it has Wuyi Rock Oolong in the blend. Oh well, guess I will just continue to hoard this forever.
When I did this cupboard sip-through exercise last year, this was the newest tea in my cupboard. It was the end! Now, it’s #27 (Kind of. Like I said, my numbering is going to be off because I added a bunch of samples after I started counting down), and I still have almost two pages full of teas ahead of it. Fun times!
Anyway, same as the passion fruit, this one is still delicious. Lychee oolong perfection.
I love this tea (#28). It really is nearly perfection. I’ve been effusive before about how much it reminds me of fresh passion fruit, so if you are really curious I refer you to those old notes. But in general if you love flavored green oolongs you can’t go wrong with Naivetea.
It’s funny, because I bought this tea (#29) last year in Pittsburgh when I went up for a knitting expo. Well, last weekend I was in Pittsburgh for the same expo. This year it was a bit later so I am not at exactly a year (which would be awesome), but pretty close.
Anyway, as I’ve said before, this tea made me give MF a second chance. I may be a French tea addict, but I had always had so-so experiences with their teas until this one. It’s always tough when you have to commit to 100g right out of the gate, but I’ve been more willing to take that chance now. Their almond flavor is pretty good (not necessarily their other nuts, though; Trois Noix was a disaster for me), and I’ve had decent luck with the bases for the almond teas.
I am un-skipping a few teas today. Like this one (#35)! I got this in my happy bag from last year and thought I would never drink it because I am not a fan of assams, but I do love Hong Kong Milk Tea, and a robust assam is great for that. You really need something to stand up to the milk. I’ve used this almost exclusively for milk teas, and I am actually almost out of this tea now!